Minnesota’s Most Wanted: Strangest Insects in Minneapolis
Granted Minnesota may not be the most exotic region known to man, but we still have a respectable about of insects that are just strange. Just for a few minutes ignore Brazils Treehopper, the Giant Weta of New Zealand, or event the Devil’s Flower Mantis of Africa. While we may not rank as high as those areas for freaky insects, we can still hold our heads high.
The American Carrion Beetle: These guys truly live a dirty life. The get their name by eating the decaying flesh in both larval and adult form. The adult beetle can be found eating fungi or rotten fruit in addition to maggots and other insect larvae that are know to feed on decaying animals. Yes, this is an extremely unsavory role that they play. However, it aids in returning nutrients from dead animals back into the ecological food web.
Pelecinid Wasp: This wild bug looks like something strait out of sci-fi movie. The long abdomen (tail) of the female does one thing very well, invoke fear in anyone that stumbles across it. You may be surprised to know that it’s primary purpose is not to sting. It is actually used to deposit eggs onto the back of grubs living underground. I’m assuming the grubs took on this chore out of shear fear from the females gnarly tail. If only they knew that when these eggs hatch, the wasp larva will then burrow into the helpless grub and eat it from the inside out.
Burying Beetle: After burying a dead bird or a small mammal, they then begin removing feathers and hair. It is then formed into the shape of a ball before the females will lay eggs on the carcass. Next they cover up the carcass with soil or plant debris. After the eggs have hatched, the emerging larvae feed on the remains of the animal. I’m grateful to have been brought into this world in a hospital, with a doctor.